Cuddyer’s Slam Helps Twins Past Angels 11-4
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ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Michael Cuddyer and Delmon Young each homered twice and the Minnesota Twins beat the Los Angeles Angels 11-4 Wednesday night.
Cuddyer’s grand slam in the fifth inning broke a 4-all tie and Jason Kubel also went deep to give the Twins a season-high five home runs.
Peter Bourjos homered for the Angels, who squandered a chance to tie Texas for the AL West lead for the first time since July 5 after the Rangers lost at Detroit. Manager Mike Scioscia returned to the dugout after serving a one-game suspension.
Anthony Swarzak (3-3) was credited with the victory, allowing one hit in five scoreless innings of relief after taking over for ineffective starter Scott Baker.
Baker threw 77 pitches through three innings in his shortest outing of the season, allowing four runs — three earned — and five hits.
He left with the score tied 4-all — as did Joel Pineiro, who was lifted with the bases loaded and one out in the fifth.
But Cuddyer drove Hisanori Takahashi’s first pitch to left-center for his fifth grand slam and the first by the Twins.
Pineiro (5-6) was charged with seven runs and seven hits in 4-1 innings. He is 0-3 with a whopping 14.85 ERA over his last four starts, and has failed to make it through the fifth in three of them.
Kubel hit his seventh homer in the seventh against Takahashi, and Cuddyer added his 18th in the ninth against Horacio Ramirez.
The Angels spotted Minnesota a 3-0 lead before pulling ahead with a four-run third. Bourjos led off with a drive into the lower seats in the left field corner, ending a streak of seven starts and 52 2-3 innings for Baker in which he did not allow a home run. Torii Hunter got the Halos even with a two-out, two-run single, and Alberto Callaspo capped the rally with an RBI single.
Young, who hadn’t hit a home run since June 9, tied it in the fourth with his second shot of the night. In the second inning, he followed a leadoff single by Danny Valencia with a drive over the fence in left-center. It was Young’s third career two-homer game and first since Oct. 4, 2009 against Kansas City.
After going 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position in their 5-1 loss to Ervin Santana on Friday night, the Twins cashed in on their first attempt against Pineiro. Joe Mauer, who came in 14 for 20 against the right-hander with no strikeouts, singled home a run in the first after Ben Revere singled and stole second.
Notes: Cuddyer is the only player still with the Twins from their 2002 AL Championship Series loss to the Angels. … Young started as the designated hitter in place of Jim Thome, who didn’t play because of stiffness in his neck. … When Young homered, he became the 60th consecutive batter Piniero had faced without a strikeout. That drought ended when the next hitter, Tsuyoshi Nishioka, looked at a called third strike. … Bourjos’ homer was the first allowed by Baker since June 6 at Cleveland, when Michael Brantley hit a solo shot against him. … Baker came in with a .568 winning percentage (64-48) is the fourth-best in Twins history behind Johan Santana (.679), Camilo Pascual (.607) and Mudcat Grant (.588). … After Thursday night’s series finale, the Twins return to Target Field on Friday night to begin a series against the White Sox — which will begin a three-day celebration of the 20th anniversary of Minnesota’s 1991 World Series title. More than 15 players from that team are scheduled to take part, along with former manager Tom Kelly. … Los Angeles came in having allowed an AL-low 79 homers.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.